Green Rice (Arroz Verde) is rice flavored with garlic, fresh herbs, and lime. The result is a flavorful side dish to serve with Mexican or Tex Mex meals. This version is baked in the oven for a hands-off dish that cooks while you prepare the rest of your meal.
With summer ahead and a big herb garden on my mind, I’m already planning new ways to use all of those fresh herbs. Baked Green Rice is shooting right to the top of that list. This rice is fragrant, can be lightly spicy (or not), and that bright green color makes it a beautiful dish to bring to the table. I like to make it in the oven so that, after a little prep, the entire dish is hands-off. But see below for tips if you’d prefer to make the rice on the stovetop.
Green Rice (Arroz Verde) Ingredients
- White Rice – This recipe was tested with jasmine rice. Any long grain rice will work, but be sure to test the rice before removing it from the oven to be sure it is fully cooked. The cook time may vary slightly with different types of rice.
- Aromatics – White onion, jalapeños, and garlic are blended into the flavorful green mixture that seasons the rice. Feel free to skip one of these if you’d like. If you want the flavor from the jalapeños but don’t want a lot of spice, just remove the seeds and membranes from the jalapeños before using them.
- Herbs – Fresh cilantro and parsley are great here, but you can mix things up if you’d like. Feel free to just use one of these fresh herbs or try it with another fresh herb if you’d prefer.
- Lime Juice – Don’t skip the fresh lime juice that is added into the rice after cooking. The bright acidity of the lime really makes all the other fresh flavors pop!
How to Make Arroz Verde on the Stovetop
When I tested this recipe, I fell hard for the hands-off method of baking the rice in the oven, but it’s easy to do this on the stovetop instead. Just blend all of the aromatic / herb ingredients as directed below and then add water until the total amount of liquid equals the amount you need to cook the rice (check the directions on the package for the preferred rice to water ratio). Then prepare the rice using your favorite stovetop method.
More Side Dishes for Tacos
- Sweet and Spicy Corn Salsa – Just like Trader Joe’s corn and chile salsa, this sweet and spicy corn salsa captures the flavor of summer. It’s great with chips, on tacos or salads, or stirred into guacamole.
- Sweet and Spicy Mango-Avocado Salsa – The combination of sweet mangos and creamy avocados with a bit of spice and lime is perfect for dipping tortilla chips.
- 8×8 Baking Dish Emile Henry – I love this small, sturdy baker.
- Food Processor – You’ll need a food processor to blend the herbs and aromatics before adding them to the rice. You could also use a standing blender.
Baked Green Rice (Arroz Verde)
- 8x8 baking dish
- Food Processor or Blender
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp White Wine Vinegar
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil
- 1/2 small White Onion, chopped into large pieces
- 1-3 Jalapeños (optional; remove seeds for less heat)
- 2 cloves Garlic, peeled
- 1/2 cup Cilantro Leaves
- 1/2 cup Parsley Leaves
- 1 cup Jasmine Rice (can use any long grain rice)
- 1 3/4 cups Water
- 1 Tbsp Lime Juice
- Heat oven to 375F / 190C.
- Spray a 2.5-quart (an 8x8 square baker works here) baking dish with nonstick cooking spray or rub it with some oil.
- In a food processor or blender, combine salt, vinegar, olive oil, onion, jalapeños, garlic cloves, cilantro, and parsley. Blend until the mixture is smooth and some small bits of the ingredients remain. (Note: If the mixture isn’t blending easily, add some of the 1 3/4 cups water to help it blend - just be sure that you’ve pre-measured the water so that you have the correct amount of total water used to make the dish.)
- Rinse and drain rice until the water runs clear.
- Pour rice into prepared baking dish.
- Heat water (just use the remaining water if some was needed to help blend the herb mixture) on the stovetop or microwave until boiling.
- Pour heated water and herb mixture from the food processor over rice. Stir to combine.
- Cover the dish tightly with foil and transfer to heated oven.
- Bake until rice is tender, 25 to 28 minutes.
- Remove rice from the oven and let it rest, still covered, for 5 minutes.
- Remove foil and fluff rice with a fork. (The herb mixture will have settled on the top, so you can stir everything together to evenly coat the rice in herb mixture before serving.)
- Squeeze lime juice over top.
- Serve immediately.
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